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Old Feb 4, 2005, 12:27 PM   #1
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Hey guys,

I need help with something that's been driving me nuts. I have a photograph that I've added borders to and want to have a print made of it. I am wanting a 16"x20" print and want to know how, reliably every time; I can edit the physical dimensions of the photograph to come out on the print without tops, bottoms or sides being cut off? Do I just change the size of the image in PS (...image<imagesize)? I plan on using Ophoto to do the print and was wondering also, what should I use for pixels? It's default is 180 pixels/inch. Thanks for any help you guys can provide!
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Old Feb 4, 2005, 2:02 PM   #2
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OK, but 16 by 20 is not a 4:3 ratio, so you must crop to maintain aspect ratio, unless you want to distort your image, which I don`t think you should do. It`s funny though, so many people like watching distorted tv on the new widesreen tv`s. Anyway, 16 by 20 is probably bigger than you can print because you would have to start with a very high resolution image, to be exact, it would be 4800 pixels by 6000 which is the equivalent of a 28 megapixel image. If you wanted to get away with 180 dpi then your original still needs to be 10 megapixel image. But to explain how in case you want to print smaller, is easy.



Just go to image size and uncheck your resample image button and choose your dpi, let`s say 300 for example, that will automatically update the image size, then click ok, then go to image size again and pick resample image, and enter in the height or width in inches in the box ( not the top boxes, the lower ones ). here`s the only hard part, when you enter in width, check to see whay height becomes, if it is smaller, then make the height the number you want for height. One of the numbers will be higher than you want, but that`s ok, you don`t want one of the numbers to be smaller. now click ok, then go to canvas size, and pick your height and width again here, this is where you are cropping away some image, so choose with that little checkerboard thingy what part of the image to protect, in other words do you want to crop away the bottom, the top or from both ( choose middle ).

Now let`s say you really really don`t want to crop anything out, we can do that too. but you will have a border which is not even on the top and bottom as compared to the sides. I`ll tell you how to do that now ( it may seem like a lot, but once you do it once, it`s easy )

do the first step where you change dpi, then when you change the height or width, do it so that the other number is smaller. now duplicate your layer. fill the background with white. then go to canvas size and make the width and height what you want it. you will now a have a border on the sides or top and bottom. now choose the top layer, go crtl-t, hold down shift and alt, and drag one of the corners inward until you like the border, but don`t let go of alt and shift. Shift makes sure you maintain aspect ratio and not distort, alt makes sure it stays centered. then when you like it click enter.There are more things you can do, but start there, and let us know if you want to do other things.

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Old Feb 4, 2005, 8:02 PM   #3
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I was tinkering and did something similar to what you explained. I added a border, because I did want one. It's 1" all around, bottom is 2". I've added text to the bottom.

What I did is to resize and crop the image (retaining aspect ration) to be 1" under what I wanted all around and 2 inches cropped off of the bottom. Then afer I added the borderof the imageso that the whole image (border and all) arewithin proportions to print at 16x20. I know this isn't the optimal print size. I'm not looking for perfection. It will hang on my wall and I think it will look nice from at least a foot and a half away. I did have it printed at 16x20 but when I recieved it in the mail it was all wrong (ouch), but what was on the print looked very nice. When I upgrade to a 1D (Shooting a D30 right now) it will be easier to do enlarge I'm sure. Thanks for the help!
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Old Feb 4, 2005, 8:08 PM   #4
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The border is a problem. If the image with the border isn't already in a 4:5 ratio any cropping to that ratio will give you an uneven border. Even if you distort the picture to keep the border it will still not be even as it will compress or expand the image in one direction more than the other. I don't think I would pay for a 16 X 20 distorted in any case.

Here's how I would do it in Photoshop:
Decide how large you want the border. Just as an example say you want a 2-inch border.
Open the image in Photoshop and select the crop tool.
Set 18 inches in the width box and 14 inches in the height box (or the other way round).
Set 300 PPI in the resolution box. If you have an 8Mp camera you would end up with about 175PPI without putting anything in the resolution box, which makes a nice print. Anything less you probably want to upsample and you might as well use 300 or whatever the maximum Ophoto accepts. The file might be a little large for e-mail.
Make your 2 inch border and you will have a 16 X 20 you can save as a high quality JPG and send off to Ophoto.

Edit: I didn't see your second post before I posted. With either of those cameras you probably want to upsample.


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Old Feb 5, 2005, 1:03 AM   #5
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I guess I explained it the long way, but that's basically what I did. Upsamping is enlarging by 10% no? If not explain what this is? Sorry if I'm being a bother, but I gotta learn somehow Thanks again guys.




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Old Feb 5, 2005, 10:26 AM   #6
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You explained it fine – I just didn't see the post before I posted. The essence of what I was saying is to use the settings on the crop tool and not fool around with the Image>Image Size box for your initial sizing. You chase your tail with that for what you are doing.

A resample is just a resizing of the actual image. If you change the print size with "Resample" unchecked or crop with nothing in the PPI box then all you have done to the image is to change a small instruction in the file about what size it should be printed. You haven't altered the image itself except maybe to discard a part with the crop tool.

But if you make a change in the image size box with resample checked or crop with a PPI in the box, the software has to basically invent pixels. Even if you are making the image smaller the pixels aren't going to fall exactly into the matrix. Unless maybe you change both edge dimensions by exactly half.

A resample that makes an image smaller is a downsample and one that makes it larger is an upsample.

Open one of your unaltered 2160 X 1440 images from your D30. Since you are using only a 1 inch border, select the crop tool and put 19 and 15 inches in the boxes. Put NOTHING in the pixels/inch. Crop the image so you get the largest 15 X 19 you can from the original image.


Go Image>Image Size and it should look like this:

Notice you lost some pixels from the 2160 because of the different proportions. Notice also that spreading those pixels over that large an image ends up with only 96 PPI.

With "Resample" UNCHECKED, if you change the 15 inches to 8 inches you get this:

Notice that the pixels are exactly the same because you didn't resample. But you are spreading those pixels over a smaller image so your PPI is up to 180. That would make a very nice print.

Change the 8 back to 15 inches so you are back like the first example with 96 PPI. That isn't enough pixel density to give a really good print. No matter what you do with it the print won't look sharp when viewed from a close distance because there isn't enough photographic information to spread across that size. If you resample to a higher PPI (upsample) you don't make the image any sharper, but you can smooth out the image a little by adding more pixels. With 96 PPI you can start to see the individual pixels in a good print.

So check the "Resample image" and the "Constrain Proportions" boxes. Change the 96 PPI to 300 PPI. Now the box will look like this:

Notice that the actual size of the image in the upper box has been changed. Where before all of your changes in the Image Size box have changed only a little instruction in the file about how large to print it, you have now changed the actual image. Even though it is larger it doesn't have any more detail than what you had before. Photoshop is just guessing at the extra pixels. It is actually even guessing at the pixels that were already there since most of them have been moved to a place that doesn't fit directly in the matrix. A resample slightly degrades the image whether you upsample or downsample. If you use a good filter like Bicubic or Lanczos the loss in negligible. The stair interpolation I think you alluded to with the 10% can look a little better – I prefer 5% increments. But any way you resample you lose a little resolution and quality.

I seldom upsample the image for a print unless the PPI falls below around 150. I wouldn't recommend an upsample for anything from 180 PPI or higher for a print. Since you are taking a relatively small image and spreading it out over a very large print I would just put a higher PPI in the pixels/inch box in the crop tool dialog at the top of the page. There is no reason to even mess with the Image Size box if you do that. If you set the crop tool to look like this before you crop your original image, the Image Size box would look like the last example if you referred to it.


You might want to check with Ophoto on the maximum resolution they recommend. That image comes out to 74Mb uncompressed. You don't want to send it at toohigh a compression or you will degrade the image in the compression. I would use 200 PPI. You won't see any difference in the print and you won't run yourself out of RAM while you are making the border.

My normal workflow for a print is to set the dimensions in the crop box with nothing in the pixels/inch box. Then I refer to the Image Size box to see what PPI I ended up with. If it is too low I then upsample the image in the Image Size box, but the proportions stay correct for the print.


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